My child, do not forget that we are in this world only temporarily and that our life dangles by a thread and that all the desirable things in the world are in vain. If only we were there where our Lord is - where angels shudder and tremble to approach! O hidden wisdom and infinite wealth of God!
Elder Ephraim of Mount Athos and Arizona
Do not forget your goal, my child. Look into heaven and see the beauty that awaits us. What are the present, earthly things? Aren't they but ashes and dust and a dream? Don't we see that everything here is subject to decay? Everything. Whereas things above are everlasting, the kingdom of God is endless, and blessed is the one who will dwell in it, for they will behold the glory of His Divine face!
My child, do not forget that we are in this world only temporarily and that our life dangles by a thread and that all the desirable things in the world are in vain.
So, whoever despises the vain things of the world - in other words, does not passionately desire them - will participate in the eternal good things. So, when we have this knowledge of the truth, naturally we shall turn the eyes of our soul at every moment towards the eternal life, towards the heavenly Jerusalem, where the choirs of angels chant godly canticles of ineffable sweetness and wisdom.
Oh, my children, how much glory your souls will have when after death they ascend to the heavens and are numbered with the angels in paradise!
Let us then glorify the risen Lord, Who counted us worthy to celebrate His holy Resurrection. Let us pray that He will also count us worthy to celebrate the eternal Sabbath in the heavens, in the new Jerusalem, in the eternal joy. "And no one, will take this joy away from you." Indeed, my child, for earthly joy is followed by sorrows which can annihilate it, whereas heavenly joy is not, because it flows continuously as if form an inexhaustible and life-giving spring. Let us compel ourselves in our Christian duties in order to be able to celebrate the eternal Pascha close to our Christ and see Him face-to-face for our blessed enjoyment, without it being interrupted anymore by trials and despair. Can worldly pleasures, or riches compare with these words of God? "I desire that they also may behold My glory which Thou hast given Me."
See what beauty awaits us! Eternity.
Glory to Thee Our God.
+ Glory to Thee for All Things +
Counsels from the Holy Mountain - by Elder Ephraim
Elder Archimandrite Ephraim (Moraitis) (born Ioannis Moraitis) (June 24, 1927 - December 7th, 2019) was an archimandrite and former abbot of Philotheou Monastery on Mount Athos, spiritual guide of several monasteries on Mount Athos and Greece, and the founder of several monasteries in the United States. He labored in Arizona at St. Anthony's Greek Orthodox Monastery.
Elder Ephraim was a hieromonk for 71 years and an elder for more than 50 years. He was a disciple of Saint Joseph the Hesychast of Mount Athos and lived in monastic obedience to him for 12 years until the saint's repose in 1959. Elder Ephraim wrote many books on his experiences and homilies of Saint Joseph.